Manganese – the new Four Letter word in Manitoba

Manganese is the new four letter word in Manitoba Welding industry.  It seems that overnight, Workplace Health and Safety has legislated a significant reduction in the allowable level of Manganese that a welder is allowed to be exposed to.

I say that is “seems” to have happened overnight, and the reality is that it was done overnight.  The American conference of Industrial Hygenienists, in the United States issued a paper, regarding the recommended level of exposure to Manganese Fumes.  This article was to be a recommendation. (   Manitobans are being forced to comply with this recommendation through the Workplace Safety & Health Act & Regulation. Which after spending significant time researching, located that the reference is in Section 17 & Section 36.  Section 36.5(1)a)states “in the case of an airborne substance for which the ACGIH has established a threshold limit value, establish an occupational exposure limit for the substance that does not exceed the threshold limit value established by the ACGIH”.

So what, you might be asking.  “What does this mean for me?”   Welding is a HUGE industry in Manitoba.  One company here in Winnipeg employees 300 welders. If it becomes too costly to run their plant in Manitoba 300 welders lose their jobs, along with upwards of 1200 additional people in the plant.  That is only one company! Every company that offers a welding service is affected by this poorly written document.

The Canadian Welding Association – Winnipeg chapter is offering a seminar on Wednesday March 5th regarding this topic.   There will be three experts in the field as well as an opportunity for question and answer time.

The presenters include:

Kevin Lyttle: Praxair and American Welding Society chairman of both the Safety and Health Committee and the Sub-Committee on Fumes and Gases.

Chris Rahm:  Occupational Hygienist | Golder Associates Ltd

Dan Curts:  from 3M Safety Products

There is limited availability for this event, so please register early.

Please register on line at

Contact me for more information!


Manitoba Regulation 217/2006 Workplace safety & health Act Regulation